Palatine teen makes barbecue meals for hospitals staff as part of his Eagle Scout project

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Friday, May 22, 2020
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James Hoadley is a Boy Scout who wants to make sure those hard workers don't go hungry.

PALATINE, Ill. (WLS) -- A young man from Palatine is going above and beyond to support our medical heroes.

James Hoadley is a Boy Scout who wants to make sure those hard workers don't go hungry.

"I thought 'we know how to make barbecue' and seeing about the virus that's going on right now. The hospital workers are working so many hours, risking their lives. I wanted to say thank you," he said.

The Eagle Scout project became almost 500 meals of pulled pork and barbecue chicken for the medical staff at Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights.

"With each of the meals there wasmac and cheese, cole slaw, barbecue sauce and cornbread," Hoadley said.

But the Fremd High sophomore's "feed the heroes" plan was almost done in even before he got started.

"The hospital said they'd do it except we'd have to have the food made in a commercial kitchen with certified staff and all the meals had to be individually-wrapped," he said.

Then, Lou Lambro, the general manager of the Westwood Tavern in Schaumburg, stepped in.

Westwood Tavern was shut down because of the pandemic. But he opened up the kitchen and then some staffers volunteered to help out.

"It was fun. We haven't been there in a couple of months now. It was actually fun for us to get back in the game, know what I mean?" Lambro said.

"I mean they are all out of work. And for them to come in and volunteer. We worked swear God, 24 hours straight. We did not sleep. We had the smokers out in the patio and they had to be watched," said Scott Hoadley, James' father.

But James and his barbecue line got it done, they fed the hospital staff with food left over.

"I was there for moral support....I was a little bit worried about my job security there for a minute," Lambro said.

The efforts lead to a happy and well-fed hospital staff.

Lambro's fellow scouts also made a slideshow to say "thanks" to medical workers.

In addition, he's raised almost $5,000 for the hospitals COVID-19 relief fund.